The Library at St. Cloud State University

Topic Ideas, Facts, and Overviews

Explore Popular Research Topics
CQ Researcher
Reliable, unbiased, and in-depth information on a wide variety of current issues. Excellent for browsing hot topics.

Opposing Viewpoints Resource Center
Provides overviews and multiple points of view on contemporary social issues. Includes viewpoint articles as well as articles from popular magazines, academic journals, newspapers, and primary sources.

Points of View Reference Center
This full-text reference resource presents multiple sides on current controversial topics. Each topic may include topical essays, supporting articles, primary source documents, images, and videos.
Authoritative Background Information

General Reference


Credo Reference Restricted Resource Some full text availabledatabase eref ebook
Provides online access to over 500 reference books (encyclopedias, dictionaries, handbooks, etc.) in all subject areas. This is the premier place to look up a quick fact or to search for background information on a research topic.

Discovering Collection Restricted Resource Some full text availableelm database
A good resource for very basic information on virtually any topic. This comprehensive reference resource includes essays, critical analyses, biographies, and primary sources in both text and multimedia.

MasterFILE Premier Restricted Resource findit database
A very broad, general database containing full text of important reference sources (good for background information on a topic), news articles, popular magazine articles, and some scholarly articles.

SAGE Reference Online Restricted Resource Some full text availabledatabase eref ebook
Provides access to 90 full-text specialized encyclopedias that offer excellent background information on a topic.
 

Arts and Music


Oxford Art Online Restricted Resource Some full text availabledatabase
More than 41,000 scholarly articles covering all aspects of the visual arts from prehistory to the 1990s. Includes numerous links to other Web resources including images.

Oxford Music Online Restricted Resource Some full text availabledatabase
Includes the complete full text of The Oxford Dictionary of Music, The Oxford Companion to Music, and Grove Music Online (including the standard music reference sources, The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, The New Grove Dictionary of Opera, and The New Grove Dictionary of Jazz).


Literature and Language


Dictionary of Literary Biography
Print Location: REFERENCE PN451 .D54 and online Restricted Resource Some full text availabledatabase
Contains in-depth biographical information on writers, poets, and playwrights world-wide. Each entry places the major works in the context of that person's life. Entries include a list of major works of the author, and a list of references.

Literature Criticism Online Restricted Resource database
Provides online full-text scholarly essays and commentary on classic books and authors. Includes Contemporary Literary Criticism, Nineteenth-Century Literature Criticism, Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism, and Shakespearean Criticism.

Nineteenth-Century Literature Criticism
REF PN761 .N5 Restricted Resource database Check MnPALS Catalog for Location and Availability
This multi-volume set includes critical articles and excerpts from criticism about literary works. Within each volume, criticism is arranged first by author, then chronologically. Citation for each literary critique is included. An individual author may be located in a number of volumes, depending on the number of works published. Use the Cumulative Title Index, a paperbound volume at the end of the series, to look up particular titles (novels, short stories, plays, poems) and find the appropriate volumes. Index available on the Web at http://www.galenet.com/servlet/LitIndex

Literature Resource Center Restricted Resource database
Provides access to full-text articles from scholarly journals and literary magazines combined with critical essays, work and topic overviews, full-text works, biographies, and more to provide a wealth of information on authors, their works, and literary movements.

Something About the Author Online
Print Location: REF PN451 .S6 and online Restricted Resource database
Biographical and bibliographical information on children's authors and illustrators. Often includes interviews and personal information. For the print version (in the library), use most recent cumulative index volume to determine volume of entries or look on the Web at http://www.galenet.com/servlet/LitIndex
Note: 1971 to present
Biographies
Biography and Genealogy Master Index
Find which books contain biographic information about individuals both living and deceased. Search more than 13.3 million biographical entries. NOTE: BGMI does not include full text. Check SCSU MnPALS to see if we have a title listed in the search results. Subscription cancelled; access ended on 30 Sept 2014.

African American Biographical Database
This extraordinary collection contains narratives of African American activists, business people, former slaves, performing artists, educators, lawyers, physicians, writers, church leaders, homemakers, religious workers, government workers, athletes, farmers, scientists, factory workers, and more--assembled from biographical dictionaries and other sources. Their stories are pivotal to an understanding of the Black American experience over the last two centuries. Coverage is from 1790 to 1950, so it does not include biographies of contemporary individuals. Note: Access to this database will end on 28 February 2015. The subscription was cancelled.

American Business Leaders of the Twentieth Century (Harvard Business School)

Biography.com

Celebration of Women Writers

Dictionary of Literary Biography
Print Location: REFERENCE PN451 .D54 and online
Contains in-depth biographical information on writers, poets, and playwrights world-wide. Each entry places the major works in the context of that person's life. Entries include a list of major works of the author, and a list of references.

Distinguished Women of Past and Present

Something About the Author Online
Print Location: REF PN451 .S6 and online
Biographical and bibliographical information on children's authors and illustrators. Often includes interviews and personal information. For the print version (in the library), use most recent cumulative index volume to determine volume of entries or look on the Web at http://www.galenet.com/servlet/LitIndex
Note: 1971 to present
Images Databases


AP Images (Associated Press) Restricted Resource Resource contains imagesdatabase
A source of over 500,000 current and historic photo images, graphic images, audio files, and publicity. Content may be used for educational purposes in papers, presentations, and secure Web spaces (e.g., in Desire2Learn pages). Approximately 1,000 photo images are added daily.

HarpWeek: The Civil War Era Restricted Resource Some full text available Resource contains imagesdatabase
"The HarpWeek Civil War database consists of the pages of Harper's Weekly for the period 1857 through 1865, scanned as images, together with a series of controlled-vocabulary indexes, which are interactively linked." "Harper's was aimed at the middle and upper socio-economic classes, and tried not to print anything that it considered unfit for the entire family to read. In addition to the importance of illustrations and cartoons by artists like Winslow Homer and Thomas Nast, the paper's editorials played a significant role in shaping and reflecting public opinion from the start of the Civil War to the end of the century." SCSU, in partnership with Winona State University, provides access for the period covering the Civil War.
Statistics/Numerical Data
ProQuest Statistical Insight Restricted Resource database
Contains general and detailed statistics on almost any topic. Search by keyword or select from specified subjects.

SRDS Media Solutions Advertising Sources Restricted Resource database
The Standard Rate and Data Service (SRDS) is a collection of databases offering information of interest to advertising and marketing students, including the Business Media Advertising Source and Consumer Media Advertising Source. Most importantly, SRDS offers access to Nielsen Segmentation and Market Solutions, the online replacement for the print resource, Lifestyle Market Analyst.  

 
Almanacs and Yearbooks
World Almanac and Book of Facts Restricted Resource database
Provides fulltext access to the The World Almanac and Book of Facts through FACTS.com.

InfoPlease Almanac

The Old Farmer's Almanac
 
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Dictionaries and Thesauri
Oxford English Dictionary Restricted Resource Some full text availabledatabase
The Oxford English Dictionary is the premier guide to the meaning, history, and pronunciation of over half a million words in the English language, both present and past. It traces the usage of words through 2.5 million quotations from a wide range of international English language sources, from classic literature and specialist periodicals to film scripts and cookery books. It also offers the best in etymological analysis, listings of variant spellings, and shows pronunciation using the International Phonetic Alphabet.


Merriam-Webster Online Unrestricted Resource
A website which includes basic and specialized dictionaries.

Dictionary.com Unrestricted Resource
A popular online dictionary that also includes a translation service, Word of the Day feature, and more.

Roget’s International Thesaurus of English Words and Phrases Unrestricted Resource
Search for synonyms and antonyms of a particular word.

Thesaurus.com Unrestricted Resource
A popular online thesaurus for synonyms and antonyms.


For additional, specialized dictionaries, go to Dictionaries, Thesauri and Translators.


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